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Spring Training: Roger Clemens, Bill Murray and Bill James

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Surfing about the nets these past several days I came to just one conclusion: Roger Clemens is a prick. Yeah, I already held that opinion, but reading up on the new Barry Bonds happenings just further cemented my opinion.

Last week, when the judge dismissed the indictment against Bonds, she also ordered that Bonds’ grand jury testimony be unsealed. Now the testimony doesn’t really help Bonds, but what you learn is one simple thing: Barry Bonds just won’t roll over on his friend Greg Anderson. The Feds granted Bonds immunity in the BALCO investigation in hopes of getting him to testify against BALCO and Greg Anderson. And Bonds wouldn’t do it. Bonds will soon be facing a trial on lying to that grand jury (the government will be refilling that indictment any day now).

Can anyone see Roger Clemens risking jail for anyone? Since this whole thing hit in December, Rocket has blamed his agents. He’s blamed George Mitchell. He’s said that Brian McNamee lied. He said that the Blue Jays doctors didn’t know how to give shots. And that the Yankee trainers gave out drugs like Skittles. His wife got HGH shots without Rocket’s knowledge. And Andy Pettitte misremembered their conversations.

Can you see Rocket going to jail for any of these people? Maybe that’s why Pettitte and McNamee talked to the Feds. They didn’t want to go to jail on behalf of Rocket because they knew there was no way Rocket would go to jail for them.

Barry Bonds might go to jail instead of ratting out his friend Greg Anderson. Greg Anderson did go to jail to avoid ratting out Bonds. Bonds is also paying to send Anderson’s daughter to private school. Really, does any one see Rocket do anything like this? Well, yeah, I suppose those idiots out there who think Rocket’s telling the truth about this whole matter probably believe Rocket would protect his friends.

But enough of Rocket. On to some spring training notes…

I made the mistake of listening to the Astros game on Saturday afternoon. Milo Hamilton was in midseason form, ranting about everything in sight. I was surprised however when Dave Raymond decided to go on the attack against stat geeks and about how they have messed up baseball with an overemphasis on stats and didn’t understand the game. He specifically hit Bill James, who is one of the baseball stat geek gods. While I don’t always agree with the overemphasis on stats, I understand the need for a good baseball person to understand them – which is probably why Milo hates stats geeks.

But I was wondering where this was coming from, until I stumbled over a passage at the Chron from a Bill James column on Craig Biggio and how Biggio had tarnished his legacy in his quest for 3,000 hits. So I click the link and go the James piece. James was actually complimentary of Biggio – I still disagree with James who, in the late 90s, thought Biggio was the most valuable player in baseball – but he felt that Biggio held on too long.

So, I can’t help but wonder if the Astro brass ordered Milo and Raymond to go on the attack.

But you Astros fans out there shouldn’t really be worrying about the team. Jose de Jesus Ortiz tells us that the pitching staff is going to be better than expected this season. Of course, the pitching staff is supposed to suck, so being better than expected probably won’t be that big of a stretch. Also, seeing as how Ortiz picked the team to win the World Series last season, you should probably discount just about anything the guy writes or says.

Meanwhile, our brethren in Chicago are having a tough start to the season. First, there’s the whole idea of possibly sell the naming rights to Wrigley Field – I guess they’ve forgotten that Wrigley put his name on the stadium to pimp his company. Then there’s manager Lou Piniella arguing with one of his possible starting pitchers.

Now come the injuries. Starting second baseman Mark DeRosa has heart problems. Left fielder Alfonso Soriano has a broken finger, and starting centerfielder Felix Pie has a twisted testicle that is preventing him from playing.

But, Cubs fans, have hope. It’s possible that in a few seasons you might have one of the best broadcasters in all of baseball. Bill Murray’s brother Joel has said that his big brother has decided that working in the Cubs’ broadcast booth would be the best thing that he could do when he retires from the movies.

Now, Murray has broadcast Cubs games before.

And here.

And here.

I know I, for one, would find a way to watch every Cubs game if Murray was in the booth, and I hate the Cubs.

The only thing that might be even better would be for Denis Leary and Lenny Clarke to get fulltime jobs as baseball broadcasters.

via videosift.com

Now that’s baseball broadcasting. And they’re already better than Milo Hamilton ever was. Even back in his good days.

And don’t forget our new slogan: Astros Baseball: Something to do Before the Hurricane Comes Inland. – John Royal

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